Ah! Good point on the Sarmatians. I actually have a copy of Herodotus' The Histories. I'll have to look them up. Traviss has already stated on her StarWars.com blog that she based Mando culture primarily on the Celts (Wiki on the Celts. The ancient Celts were a ethnically and geographically diverse people that shared the same basic culture and language. Archaeological digs have shown that Celtic culture spanned all across Europe and even east of Greece (Celtic culture map). As a fledgling fictional culture, I think it would be appropriate incorporate elements of any society that we felt synced with Traviss' concept. For example, I think an son of Mandalore would agree with the verses found in "Sayings of the High One" from the Norse The Poetic Edda: The foolish man thinks he will live forever, if he keeps away from fighting; but old age won't grant him truce even if the spears do. - stanza 16, Sayings of the High One Cattle die, kinsmen die, the self must also die; but glory never dies, for the man who is able to achieve it. Cattle die, kinsmen die, the self must also die; I know one thing which never dies: the reputation of each dead man. - stanzas 76 & 77, Sayings of the High One And from the other side of the world, we can appreciate the pragmatism of the samurai: For warriors of lesser rank , it is particularly desirable that they learn to ride well, so that they can ride any horse, even rambunctious and unruly horses. Let me explain. Fine horses easy to ride are rare; even if they exist, they are the mounts of great warriors, not found tethered in the stables of warriors of lesser rank. But, if you master horsemanship, you can spot a horse that is good but is too rambunctious, temperamental, or unruly and buy it for a low price; thus you can always have a better horse than you could normally afford. - from Part 1, Chapter 10 'Horsemanship', Code of the Samurai Of course, this should all be taken with a grain of salt. Saying of the High One is rife with chauvinism. Samurai bushido is ultimately a form of institutionalization to condition highly trained warrior to be fanatically subservient to their lords. I really don't see Mandalorians being inherently sexist or gladly accepting a bag of rice for putting their life on the line. But, there's a lot to be gleaned and synthesized from real-world archaic warrior societies when developing your own unique, fictional one.